i ha‘aheo no ka lawai‘a i ka lako i ka ‘upena

i ha‘aheo no ka lawai‘a i ka lako i ka ‘upena

“the fisherman may be well proud when well supplied with nets”

Good tools help one to succeed.  When doing any task, whether it be fishing, hunting, building, learning, or working, a plethora of tools and skills will help guide you toward success.

This ‘ōlelo no’eau sets a great foundation for the two years that lie ahead.  Our fellowship leads us through a vast amount of in the field, hands-on training that strives to expand our existing tool set and add new additional skills that will help us grow in to better conservationists for tomorrow.

We had a great trip to Kaʻūpūlehu, more to come soon!

Mahalo nui for all your contributions and support!

marine debris, don’t set it free

This week is the Hawaii Marine Debris Action Plan Workshop at the new state of the art NOAA office. This workshop is not only designed to draft the action plan for 2014-2015 but it is also an outstanding opportunity for federal, state, and non-profit agencies to come together and discuss how they can better address the marine debris issue locally and what opportunities lie to expand internationally. Agencies have the opportunity to present on their accomplishments over the last two years and discuss what challenges they faced. Together these agencies will bring their brain power and experiences to draft the next action plan for 2014-2015. It’s a great example of like minded people coming together for a better tomorrow!

20140723-120318 PM-43398281.jpg

One fish, two fish, moon fish, wahoooo!

The moon is shining and most of Honolulu is peacefully sleeping, dreaming of surf and sunny days, but not those down at pier 38.  Just about this time fishing boats are unloading their catch, where the fish are then weighed, tagged with the boat name and displayed on pallets, covered and packed with ice.  Around 5:30 AM a brass bell is rung and the bidding begins, buyers for local restaurants and markets along with buyers for continental and international restaurants (and a few brave individuals) follow around the auctioneer and bid on the fish until the warehouse is empty.  The selection and abundance of fish varies seasonally and day to day, often resulting in fluctuating prices in local markets and restaurants; however, not all of the fish stays locally.  The majority of the day’s catch is exported to the mainland and Canada, and as far as Europe.

Fish galore!
                            Fish galore!

Last week Thursday, we were fortunate enough to drag ourselves out of bed before the sun and join Leilani at the fish auction to see what the day’s catch was.  Although we had all visited the auction before, each visit is always a unique experience.  The added bonus of this trip was Kalani and his vast knowledge of fisheries from his previous work as a fisheries observer with NOAA.  He taught us about long-line fishing and shared stories with us from his years spent on the fishing vessels, making this experience really come to life. The day’s catch included pallets full of ahi, mahimahi, opah, a`u, monchong, escolar, and shutome.

Kalani teaching us about the different tuna species
Kalani teaching us about the different tuna species

All of the fish sold at this auction are caught by long-line vessels and only 164 vessels are permitted to fish and sell to this market.  These factors set the Honolulu auction apart from most other markets; by limiting the fishing method and amount of fishing vessels permitted, the United Fishing Agency controls the amount of fish caught and attempts to avoid over fishing.  Still yet, the amount of fish present at the auction each day is amazing!

Opah (Moonfish)
                       Opah (Moonfish)

Fish Auction Fun Facts:

-The Honolulu Fish Auction has been around since 1952

-The auction is open 6 days a week, year round

-The Honolulu Fish Auction is the only auction between Tokyo and Maine & the only fresh tuna auction in the U.S.

-Honolulu’s auction is based off of the Tsukiji Fish Market; large fish are sold individually not by boatload to wholesalers like most markets

-Truly fresh fish doesn’t smell fishy


To learn more visit the Hawaii Seafood website.




ʿaʿohe pau ka ʿike i ka halau hoʿokahi

ʿaʿohe pau ka ʿike i ka halau hoʿokahi

“not all knowledge is learned in one house “

Knowledge stems from all aspects of environments, types of education, and all walks of life.  No one way of learning is right or superior, everyone brings light into a situation.

This `ōlelo no`eau celebrates this week of gathering minds and merging ideas at the Hawai’i Conservation Conference.  This year HCC highlights “Navigating Change in the Pacific Islands”, bringing together leaders in island conservation from Hawai`i nei and wider Pacific Islands.

We look forward to being part of such a remarkable event.

For more information please visit their website.

Yurt seen nothing yet!

Translated as “day of victory”, Lana`i is much more than the “Pineapple Isle”.   My colleague, Brad, and I learned firsthand or perhaps first-ear from iconic Lana`i kupuna, Uncle Sol Kaho`ohalahala.  He is a man of immense vision and foresight, with great aloha for his `aina and future generations of Lana`i.  He has spearheaded a project that will bring pride to local youth and a connection to their landscapes and seascapes like never before, at least for this generation.  He is building a fishing camp.  It’s far more interesting than summer dips in the nearby watering hole or smores galore.  There might be some of that too, but he’s thinking much further for his mo`opuna and generations unborn.  Uncle Sol plans to establish a place to learn traditional styles of fishing from a whole new platform, a canoe.  Uncle Sol is reestablishing the canoe to its rightful place. 

During our two-day stay at Uncle Sol’s home on Lana`i’s only homestead, we learned about parts of this vision.  Conservation International has given a three-year commitment to help with his endeavors. Long-time family friends Jay and Maile Carpio, along with their children, 14 year-old Shannon and 11 year-old Hunter, helped Sol launch this movement to activate communities around Hawai`i.  The Carpios helped us to fill in some of the pukas as to how we came to be with them.  Names like KUA and The Maui Nui Network were referenced, with beautiful sceneries of Moloka`i and Maui as the backdrop of our conversations.  We knew very little before we met them and we realized that we still need to know more.  One thing we did leave knowing for sure was how to build a yurt.

                        Yurt Building 101
Moloka’i from the Maunalei ahupua’a, Lana’i
Kalani, ‘Elika , Brad, and Shari in front of their newly built yurt


Crowdsourcing the Globe!

Do you enjoy traveling the world and playing video games?  Do you enjoy volunteering?

Combine those forces and participate in a charitable cause in the comfort of your own home (maybe even in your pajamas).  DigitableGlobe’s Tomnod web app has harnessed the power of virtual crowdsourcing, using satellite images to not only explore the globe but also solve present real-world problems.  Previous campaigns include search and rescue for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 and mapping damage after Super Typhoon Haiyan, among many other causes.  Tomnod provides users with a randomly chosen map of the search area and instructions on identifying threats and how to drop a pin on specified target objects.  An algorithm then finds where there is overlap in tags from people around the world who tagged the same location and the most notable areas are then shared with authorities or the given organization.

Now its time to help us! The Nature Conservancy of Hawai`i has partnered with Tomnod to help save Kauai’s rainforests from invasive weeds.  Help us to map Australian Tree Ferns and African Tulip trees hidden within our native forest.  These plants were introduced to be used as an ornamental tree fern for landscaping but are now aggressively taking over the native forests.



Please visit tomnod.com to join the cause!

The Journey of Three Marine Fellows


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